The Most Famous

POLITICIANS from Lithuania

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This page contains a list of the greatest Politicians. The pantheon dataset contains 15,577 Politicians, 51 of which were born in Lithuania. This makes Lithuania the birth place of the 53rd most number of Politicians behind South Africa and Pakistan.

Top 10

The following people are considered by Pantheon to be the top 10 most legendary Politicians of all time. This list of famous Politicians is sorted by HPI (Historical Popularity Index), a metric that aggregates information on a biography’s online popularity. Visit the rankings page to view the entire list of Politicians.

Photo of Władysław II Jagiełło

1. Władysław II Jagiełło (1362 - 1434)

With an HPI of 74.99, Władysław II Jagiełło is the most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 66 different languages on wikipedia.

Jogaila (listen; c. 1352/1362 – 1 June 1434), later Władysław II Jagiełło (Polish pronunciation: [vwaˈdɨswaf jaˈɡʲɛwːɔ] (listen)) was Grand Duke of Lithuania (1377–1434) and then King of Poland (1386–1434), first alongside his wife Jadwiga until 1399, and then sole ruler of Poland. Born a pagan, he converted to Catholicism in 1386 and was baptized as Władysław in Kraków, married the young Queen Jadwiga, and was crowned King of Poland as Władysław II Jagiełło. In 1387, he converted Lithuania to Christianity. His own reign in Poland started in 1399, upon the death of Queen Jadwiga, lasted a further thirty-five years, and laid the foundation for the centuries-long Polish–Lithuanian union. He was a member of the Jagiellonian dynasty in Poland that bears his name and was previously also known as the Gediminid dynasty in the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. The dynasty ruled both states until 1572, and became one of the most influential dynasties in late medieval and early modern Europe. During his reign, the Polish-Lithuanian state was the largest state in the Christian world.Jogaila was the last pagan ruler of medieval Lithuania. After he became King of Poland, as a result of the Union of Krewo, the newly formed Polish-Lithuanian union confronted the growing power of the Teutonic Order. The allied victory at the Battle of Grunwald in 1410, followed by the Peace of Thorn, secured the Polish and Lithuanian borders and marked the emergence of the Polish–Lithuanian alliance as a significant force in Europe. The reign of Władysław II Jagiełło extended Polish frontiers and is often considered the beginning of Poland's Golden Age.

Photo of Józef Piłsudski

2. Józef Piłsudski (1867 - 1935)

With an HPI of 72.75, Józef Piłsudski is the 2nd most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 72 different languages.

Józef Klemens Piłsudski (Polish: [ˈjuzɛf ˈklɛmɛns piwˈsutskʲi] (listen); 5 December 1867 – 12 May 1935) was a Polish statesman who served as the Chief of State (1918–1922) and First Marshal of Poland (from 1920). He was considered the de facto leader (1926–35) of the Second Polish Republic as the Minister of Military Affairs. After World War I, he held increasing dominance in Polish politics and was an active player in international diplomacy. He is viewed as a father of the Second Polish Republic re-established in 1918, 123 years after the final Partition of Poland in 1795.Seeing himself as a descendant of the culture and traditions of the Polish–Lithuanian Commonwealth, Piłsudski believed in a multi-ethnic Poland—"a home of nations" including indigenous ethnic and religious minorities. Early in his political career, Piłsudski became a leader of the Polish Socialist Party. Believing Poland's independence would be won militarily, he formed the Polish Legions. In 1914, he predicted a new major war would defeat the Russian Empire and the Central Powers. After World War I began in 1914, Piłsudski's Legions fought alongside Austria-Hungary against Russia. In 1917, with Russia faring poorly in the war, he withdrew his support for the Central Powers, and was imprisoned in Magdeburg by the Germans. Piłsudski was Poland's Chief of State from November 1918, when Poland regained its independence, until 1922. From 1919–21 he commanded Polish forces in six wars that re-defined the country's borders. On the verge of defeat in the Polish–Soviet War in August 1920, his forces repelled the invading Soviet Russians at the Battle of Warsaw. In 1923, with a government dominated by his opponents, in particular the National Democrats, Piłsudski retired from active politics. Three years later he returned to power in the May Coup and became the strongman of the Sanacja regime. He focused on military and foreign affairs until his death in 1935, developing a cult of personality that has survived into the 21st century. Some aspects of Piłsudski's administration, such as imprisoning his political opponents at Bereza Kartuska, remain controversial. Yet, he is highly esteemed in Polish memory and is regarded as a founder of modern independent Poland.

Photo of Vytautas

3. Vytautas (1352 - 1430)

With an HPI of 71.60, Vytautas is the 3rd most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 48 different languages.

Vytautas (c. 1350 – 27 October 1430), also known as Vytautas the Great (Lithuanian: Vytautas Didysis , Belarusian: Вітаўт, Vitaŭt, Polish: Witold Kiejstutowicz, Witold Aleksander or Witold Wielki Ruthenian: Vitovt, Latin: Alexander Vitoldus, Old German: Wythaws or Wythawt) from the late 14th century onwards, was a ruler of the Grand Duchy of Lithuania. He was also the Prince of Grodno (1370–1382), Prince of Lutsk (1387–1389), and the postulated king of the Hussites.In modern Lithuania, Vytautas is revered as a national hero and was an important figure in the national rebirth in the 19th century. Vytautas is a popular male given name in Lithuania. In commemoration of the 500-year anniversary of his death, Vytautas Magnus University was named after him. Monuments in his honour were built in many towns in the independent Lithuania during the interwar period from 1918 to 1939. It is known that Vytautas himself knew and spoke in the Lithuanian language with Jogaila.

Photo of Mindaugas

4. Mindaugas (1203 - 1263)

With an HPI of 70.01, Mindaugas is the 4th most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 49 different languages.

Mindaugas (German: Myndowen, Latin: Mindowe, Old East Slavic: Мендог, Belarusian: Міндоўг, Polish: Mendog, c. 1203–1263) is the first known Grand Duke of Lithuania and the only crowned King of Lithuania. Little is known of his origins, early life, or rise to power; he is mentioned in a 1219 treaty as an elder duke, and in 1236 as the leader of all the Lithuanians. The contemporary and modern sources discussing his ascent mention strategic marriages along with banishment or murder of his rivals. He extended his domain into regions southeast of Lithuania proper during the 1230s and 1240s. In 1250 or 1251, during the course of internal power struggles, he was baptised as a Roman Catholic; this action enabled him to establish an alliance with the Livonian Order, a long-standing antagonist of the Lithuanians. During the summer of 1253 he was crowned King of Lithuania, ruling between 300,000 and 400,000 subjects.While Mindaugas's ten-year reign as king was marked by many state-building accomplishments, his conflicts with relatives and other dukes continued. The western part of Lithuania — Samogitia — strongly resisted the alliance's rule. His gains in the southeast were challenged by the Tatars. He broke peace with the Livonian Order in 1261, possibly renouncing Christianity, and was assassinated in 1263 by his nephew Treniota and another rival, Duke Daumantas of Pskov. His three immediate successors were assassinated as well. The disorder was not resolved until Traidenis gained the title of Grand Duke c. 1270. Although his reputation was unsettled during the following centuries and his descendants were not notable, he gained standing during the 19th and 20th centuries. Mindaugas was the only King of Lithuania; while most of the Lithuanian Grand Dukes from Jogaila onward also reigned as Kings of Poland, the titles remained separate. Now generally considered the founder of the Lithuanian state, he is also now credited with stopping the advance of the Tatars towards the Baltic Sea, establishing international recognition of Lithuania, and turning it towards Western civilization. In the 1990s the historian Edvardas Gudavičius published research supporting an exact coronation date – 6 July 1253. This day is now an official national holiday in Lithuania, Statehood Day.

Photo of Gediminas

5. Gediminas (1275 - 1341)

With an HPI of 69.66, Gediminas is the 5th most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 43 different languages.

Gediminas (Latin: Gedeminne, Latin: Gedeminnus; c. 1275 – December 1341) was the king or Grand Duke of Lithuania from 1315 or 1316 until his death. He is credited with founding this political entity and expanding its territory which later spanned the area ranging from the Baltic Sea to the Black Sea. Also seen as one of the most significant individuals in early Lithuanian history, he was responsible for both building Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, and establishing a dynasty that later came to rule other European countries such as Poland, Hungary and Bohemia.As part of his legacy, he gained a reputation for being a champion of paganism, who successfully diverted attempts to Christianize his country by skillful negotiations with the Pope and other Christian rulers.

Photo of Algirdas

6. Algirdas (1296 - 1377)

With an HPI of 68.48, Algirdas is the 6th most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 33 different languages.

Algirdas (Belarusian: Альгерд, Alhierd, Ukrainian: Ольгерд, Ольґерд, Olherd, Olgerd, Polish: Olgierd; c. 1296 – May 1377) was the Grand Duke of Lithuania. He ruled the Lithuanians and Ruthenians from 1345 to 1377. With the help of his brother Kęstutis (who defended the western border of the Duchy) he created an empire stretching from the present Baltic states to the Black Sea and to within 80 kilometres (50 miles) of Moscow.

Photo of Kęstutis

7. Kęstutis (1297 - 1382)

With an HPI of 65.66, Kęstutis is the 7th most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 32 different languages.

Kęstutis (Latin: Kinstut, Lithuanian pronunciation: [kæːsˈtutɪs]; c. 1297 – 3 or 15 August 1382) was the Grand Duke of Lithuania. He was the Duke of Trakai and governed the Grand Duchy of Lithuania, 1342–1382, together with his brother Algirdas (until 1377), and with his nephew Jogaila (until 1381). He ruled over the Lithuanians and Ruthenians. The name "Kęstutis" is a derivative from the old form of the name Kęstas, which is a shortened version of such Lithuanian names as Kęstaras, Kęstautas (there kęs-ti means to cope). Historic writing sources reflect different Lithuanian pronunciation.

Photo of Antanas Smetona

8. Antanas Smetona (1874 - 1944)

With an HPI of 64.51, Antanas Smetona is the 8th most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 46 different languages.

Antanas Smetona (Lithuanian: [ɐnˈtaːnɐs sʲmʲɛtoːˈnɐ] (listen); 10 August 1874 – 9 January 1944) was a Lithuanian intellectual and journalist and the first President of Lithuania from 1919 to 1920 and again from 1926 to 1940, before its occupation by the Soviet Union. He was one of the most important Lithuanian political figures between World War I and World War II, and was one of the most prominent ideologists of nationalism in Lithuania.

Photo of Vytautas Landsbergis

9. Vytautas Landsbergis (1932 - )

With an HPI of 63.54, Vytautas Landsbergis is the 9th most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 43 different languages.

Vytautas Landsbergis (born 18 October 1932) is a Lithuanian politician and former Member of the European Parliament. He was the first Speaker of Reconstituent Seimas of Lithuania after its independence declaration from the Soviet Union. He has written 20 books on a variety of topics, including a biography of Mikalojus Konstantinas Čiurlionis, as well as works on politics and music. He is a founding signatory of the Prague Declaration on European Conscience and Communism, and a member of the international advisory council of the Victims of Communism Memorial Foundation.

Photo of Valdas Adamkus

10. Valdas Adamkus (1926 - )

With an HPI of 63.08, Valdas Adamkus is the 10th most famous Politician.  His biography has been translated into 56 different languages.

Valdas Adamkus ([ˈvɐ̂ˑɫdɐs ɐˈdɐmˑkʊs] (listen); born Voldemaras Adamkavičius; 3 November 1926) is a Lithuanian-American politician, diplomat and civil engineer. He served as the 5th and 7th President of Lithuania from 1998 to 2003 and again from 2004 to 2009. Adamkus' first tenure as president lasted for five years, from 26 February 1998 to 28 February 2003, following his defeat by Rolandas Paksas in the 2003 presidential election. Paksas was later impeached and removed from office by a parliamentary vote on 6 April 2004. Soon afterwards, when a new election was announced, Adamkus again ran for president and was re-elected. His approval ratings increased during this period and become a highly regarded moral authority in the state. He was succeeded as president on 12 July 2009 by Dalia Grybauskaitė. He is considered by some as being one of the best Lithuanian leaders in modern history.He is married to Alma Adamkienė, who is involved in charitable activities in Lithuania. Following the end of his term as president, Adamkus remained involved in international development, and is a member of the European Academy of Diplomacy.

Pantheon has 61 people classified as politicians born between 1203 and 1990. Of these 61, 26 (42.62%) of them are still alive today. The most famous living politicians include Vytautas Landsbergis, Valdas Adamkus, and Dalia Grybauskaitė. The most famous deceased politicians include Władysław II Jagiełło, Józef Piłsudski, and Vytautas. As of April 2022, 10 new politicians have been added to Pantheon including Antanas Sniečkus, Raphael Kalinowski, and Osip Piatnitsky.

Living Politicians

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Deceased Politicians

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Newly Added Politicians (2022)

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Which Politicians were alive at the same time? This visualization shows the lifespans of the 22 most globally memorable Politicians since 1700.